Prechopped sweet potato is now available in most grocery stores. If you’re unable to find it, peel and cube two small sweet potatoes to measure about 3 cups.
Olive oil-flavored cooking spray
1 cup diced cooked ham (such as Cumberland Gap)
1 1/2 cups sliced leek (about 1 large)
2 tablespoons water (optional)
3 cups refrigerated cubed peeled sweet potato (such as Glory)
1 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
2 cups water
1 (5-ounce) can evaporated fat-free milk
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Thinly sliced leek (optional)
Thinly sliced green onions (optional)
Heat a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add ham; cook 3 to 4 minutes or until browned, stirring frequently. Remove ham from pan; set aside. Add leek to pan; coat with cooking spray. Cook leek, covered, 5 minutes or until very tender, stirring occasionally. Add 2 tablespoons water to pan, if needed, to prevent burning. Add sweet potato and next 4 ingredients, scraping pan to loosen browned bits; bring mixture to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 15 minutes or until sweet potato is very tender.
Place half of potato mixture in a blender or food processor. Remove center piece of blender lid (to allow steam to escape); secure blender lid on blender. Place a clean towel over opening in blender lid (to avoid splatters). Process until smooth. Pour puree into a large bowl. Repeat procedure with remaining mixture. Return pureed mixture to pan. Stir in 3/4 cup reserved ham. Ladle soup into bowls; top servings evenly with 1/4 cup reserved ham. Garnish with sliced leek and onions, if desired.
Yield: 4 servings (serving size: about 1 1/4 cups)